7/25/2008

Next Stop: Miracle Valley Vineyards

Hello Friends,

I recently visited Miracle Valley Vineyards, located in the charm-filled village of Delaplane, Virginia, and nestled amidst picturesque and serene surroundings. Miracle Valley is a small family-run operation owned by Mary Ann and Joe Cunningham. The winery was established in 2004, and opened its doors for tasting almost one year ago in August 2007.

Miracle Valley Vineyards

Miracle Valley is common in the respect that it is one of a number of small producers in Virginia hand-crafting limited batches of wine for sample and sale out of Virginia tasting rooms. What I found unique about this small producer is that with the exception of one semi-dry dessert selection, all of their wines are 100% estate grown. In addition, the current offerings are 100% varietal wines – no blending. The grape variety on the label is what you get in the bottle – something for you purists to enjoy. To further explain the difference, many wineries source grapes from local vineyards and other wineries to make their wines each year. Most varietal wines today are usually blended with another grape variety or varieties for added complexity, color, structure, etc. Of course, nothing is wrong with these processes, especially if the wine is good and the characteristics of the grape varietals are well represented.

Mary Ann (right) and friend behind the tasting bar

The winery, tasting room, and vineyard sit upon 50 heavenly acres, and before becoming Miracle Valley, a cattle pasture occupied the land. The tasting room is housed in a nicely renovated multi-level historic farm house. Part of the tasting room is dedicated to a wine gift shop, and from the tasting bar you can enjoy pond and vista views. Current wine offerings consist of the following: 2006 Chardonnay Reserve (done in American Oak), 2006 Chardonnay Reserve (done in Hungarian Oak), 2006 Chardonnay, 2006 Merlot, 2006 Cab Sauvignon, 2007 Viognier, and for the sweet ending, the 2006 Sweet Michelle (made from 100% Rkatsiteli).

Outdoor Patio

The wines tasted were generally all easy drinking in style with nice balance and good varietal character. The exception would be the Cabernet Sauvignon, which was aged in American oak, and is more of a food pairing wine than an evening sipper. The sweet ending, the Sweet Michelle, is off dry with a good level of acidity; therefore it is not overly sweet and makes for an enjoyable and interesting ending to evening dinner.

Butterfly Bush and a Beautiful Visitor

In closing friend, be sure to put Miracle Valley Vineyards on your schedule when jumping on the Fauquier County wine trail. Expect to find a warm and relaxing environment and breathtaking views from the back patio. I would be remiss if I did not tell you to bring your camera and visit the beautiful butterfly bush while it is still in bloom. I think every butterfly in Delaplane must have been hanging out there when I visited. When you visit, let the Cunninghams know you read about them here on Dezel’s Virginia Vine Spot.

Info: Miracle Valley Vineyards, 3661 Double J Lane, Delaplane, VA 20144


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